There are different options when it comes to selecting an inoculant for corn silage and high moisture corn. Inoculants have different purposes; there are ones that are purely up-front fermenters and are efficient at dropping the pH. Others are designed to improve stability at feed out and help prevent spoilage and heating.

When deciding on an inoculant, you’ll need to determine what your fermentation goals are and where your largest challenges with forages are.

Crop-N-Rich MTD/1 is an upfront fermenter than can drop the pH of your forages quickly. It can be used on haylage, corn silage, balage and grass silages. It is very stable when stored correctly and has great tank mix viability. It works on a large range of pH’s (3.5-7.5) and a wide range of dry matter conditions, making this a great versatile product that works great on many of the forages on your farm.

Crop-N-Rich Brochure

Crop-N-Rich Buchneri is great for aerobic stability at feed out and is effective on high moisture corn and snaplages. It produces a small amount of acetic acid during fermentation. Just enough to work as a preservative, but not enough to negatively affect intakes. It is suggested to delay feed out for 45 days to maximize the benefits of the buchneri.

Crop-N-Rich Stage 2 is a combination of the upfront fermenter and buchneri. Most commonly it is used on corn silage to help efficiently drop the pH and helps reduce yeast production, mold counts and spoilage, but can be used on corn silage, high moisture corn, haylage, balage, and grass silages. It is most effectively used on forages that are fed during warm weather, a challenge with feed out rates, high starch feeds, and crops that have been compromised because of rain, hail, insects or disease damage.

CNR Buchneri & Stage 2 Brochure

To maximize the use of your inoculants here are a few tips:

  • Store inoculants in a cool place – avoid freeze-thaw cycles
  • Take care during transport – don’t transport in dash or bed of truck where it is hot
  • Use cool water to mix – hot water could kill some of the bugs
  • Keep the tank cool – if the mixture heats about 90 degrees cool down with frozen soda bottle – avoid using direct ice
  • Use mixed inoculant within 24 hours

Inoculants can be a large investment up front but taking that cost and spreading it out on a feeding rate per cow basis, you can compare better to other products. Inoculants can be about 1 – 4 cents per cow per day. When you compare this to a toxin binder product that may be added to negate the effects of toxin and molds in feeds they generally run 7 – 13 cents per cow per day. Inoculants help prevent these types of negative products from ever forming in your forages, which could be more cost effective in the long run.

If you have any questions regarding which inoculant would have the greatest benefit on your operation, talk to your Ag Partners Nutrition Consultant.

by: Courtney Duxbury